Early Christian Studies :
One of the most important parts of the Hebrew social structure was blood-line or genealogy. There were three primary areas this directly impacted. One was their status and the highest of course were the royal line and the priestly line. Another of almost equal importance were the political genealogies and arrangements for peace.
The royal blood line was carefully recorded and traced all the way back to the beginning with (some say) Abraham. The point is that it was so very important. It was definitely important when Jesus came on the scene. So important in fact that Matthew in his Gospel dedicated the very first part to the genealogy of Christ as a decedent of the Royal line. It was actually an imperative for him to even be considered as the messiah. The Hebrews believed in proof, evidence, and of course lineage. It was because of lack of proof that some of the priests were ejected from the temple after the return from captivity. Many people were turned away from the children of Israel because proof of their lineage couldn’t be provided. Oh yes, lineage meant a great deal. The two big families during the time of Jesus were the Hasmoneans and the Herodians. The people were very pleased with and truly loved the Hasmonean Kings. When Herod started his dynasty he was not popular. The people wanted another Hasmonean king. Although it got better, this bitterness had splintered the Judeans and started a undercurrent that came to a head from time to time.
This then was the social structure of Judea during the days of Christ. It was a recipe for problems and was like a festering sore. It was only too easy to pit groups against each other, which was similar to the military strategy of divide and conquer. One of the dividing points was their own religion.